Reports

Legal aid news: July 2019

Welcome to our update of the latest legal aid and access to justice news from July 2019.

Celebrating 70 years of legal aid: On 30 July 1949  the Legal Aid and Advice Act received royal assent, creating the legal aid scheme. The 30 July 2019 therefore saw the 70th anniversary of this important step in the campaign for access to justice. In order to celebrate and highlight the significance of this milestone, the Justice Alliance organised a large gathering outside the Ministry of Justice.

YLAL Response to Labour Party’s 2019 National Policy Forum Consultation

YLAL was invited to respond to the Labour Party’s '2019 National Policy Forum Consultation'.  The purpose of the consultation is to seek 'views on how best to rebuild the criminal justice system so that at every stage effective action is taken to prevent further offending and provide real opportunities for rehabilitation'.

Many of the consultation questions are out of scope of YLAL's institutional expertise. However, YLAL has produced a response addressing the most relevant questions to our members.

Using the Law to Protect Refugee and Migrant Rights: YLAL Midlands event on World Refugee Day 2019

On 20 June 2019, YLAL Midlands hosted an event on the law relating to refugees and migrants and the increasing difficulties that individuals face in seeking safety or a better life in the UK. We also began discussions on building networks between lawyers, charities and community groups to empower individuals seeking to exercise their rights.

Statement: Report by UN Special Rapporteur

Young Legal Aid Lawyers (YLAL) welcomes the publication today (22 May 2019) of the final report by the UN Special Rapporteur on Extreme Poverty and Human Rights, Philip Alston, following his visit to the United Kingdom in November 2018.

The UN Special Rapporteur rightly states that legal aid has been "dramatically reduced" in England and Wales since the introduction of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 (LASPO). The report notes that the number of cases funded by civil legal aid "declined by a staggering 82 per cent between 2010-11 and 2017-18".